Concept

Prospero (spacecraft)

Summary
The Prospero satellite, also known as the X-3, was launched by the United Kingdom in 1971. It was designed to undertake a series of experiments to study the effects of the space environment on communications satellites and remained operational until 1973, after which it was contacted annually for over 25 years. Although Prospero was the first British satellite to have been launched successfully by a British rocket, Black Arrow; the first British satellite placed in orbit was Ariel 1, launched in April 1962 on a US rocket. Construction Prospero was built by the Royal Aircraft Establishment in Farnborough. Initially called Puck, it was designed to conduct experiments to test the technologies necessary for communication satellites. Two experimental solar cells setups were tested. One was a test of a lightweight cell and mounting. The other was an attempt to replace the standard fused sil
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